ISSUE 6: WINTER 2017 / POETRY

“Horns” by Kyle Walsh

Horns
in a ragged blare, scratchy,
atonal, drums on low
tom toms rolling, falling out of their rhythms,
inflationary lilt of the bass, distortion
maniacal, instinctive rush:

horns
writhing out, music
a stilllife of motion:

this is the way her song seeped in,
the daily cries cascading in,
yet seeming to rumble, redouble away,
not immune to neverending:
a lip lipped with iridium,
a dance of smutty flags atop metallic tongues,
black bile at the bottom of the coffee cup.

I went to see the oracle—
the oracle damned me.

She had a jigsaw face,
hair a menagerie of parrots,
pilfered volcanics in her outstretched hands,
she was the nth version of she.

She re-alchemized herself,
dove elliptical
into gulleys, aroused the indifinities—
climbing upon tree limbs

I tried the chiseled word—
She sang without words.

Unsang me,
this space that cannot be corralled—
under a ceiling infested with eye-gnomes,
discolorations, contorted faces,

lilith improvised my dreams,
yet with a rhythmic regularity and dance,
each night desire pressed into the barrels . . .

each day, mirages congealed in
a solitary sunburnt land
(that is my stomach, that is my mind).

I sing I? Preposterous!
But if I don’t have the words to explain myself,
when the time comes I will lead myself to the firing squad.

Creatrix, how do I scratch out these erratic ecstatics?
No fat on my bones to keep in warmth,
I let this cold desert wind pierce my skin
until this body grown thin against the elements becomes a
sieve.
And before I sift away like a tower
of sand (sand that is pulverized bone),

coil me up inside of this leg, this thigh

the days have pooled into a sadness conjured from blank skies

re-twine the collapsed valves of this heart

every opening is a divide

I hold myself

in

 


Kyle Walsh grew up in New Jersey and went to Cornell University. He currently resides in Berkeley, California, where he writes, drums, and works at an independent bookstore.

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